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No let-up in Iraqi car bombings

Assailants have detonated as many as nine car bombs at outdoor markets and on parking lots around the Iraqi capital Baghdad, killing at least 30 people. The bombings took place in mainly Shiite areas.

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Day of carnage in Iraq

Baghdad was rocked Monday as a series of car bomb attacks continued. The deadliest blasts were in Baghdad's eastern Sadr City district - at vegetable markets and parking lots.

The blasts left at least 30 dead and 75 people wounded. Of the areas hit on Monday, six of them were mainly Shiite-majority, one mixed and another Sunni-majority.

On Sunday, a suicide bomber had killed at least 25 people attending a funeral inside a mosque in the mostly Shiite city of Hille, south of Baghdad.

Another car bomb attack on Sunday at Irbil in Iraq's mainly Kurdish north left six dead. One of the vehicles used in that attack was an ambulance.

Last Friday, bombs exploded near two Sunni mosques in Baghdad, killing six people as worshippers were leaving after prayers.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the latest attacks but they bear the hallmarks of al Qaeda's local branch, known as the Islamic State of Iraq.

Discontent has grown among Iraq's minority Sunnis toward what they consider to be second-class treatment by the Shiite-led government.

September toll exceeds 840

The latest bloodshed brings the September death toll in Iraq to more than 840 killed, according to a tally kept by the news agency AFP and based on information from security and medical sources.

July was the deadliest month in 2013, according to United Nations estimates, with 1,057 killed, making it the worst monthly toll in five years in Iraq.

Some 4,600 people have been killed across Iraq so far this year.

September's surge in sectarian violence has heightened fears that Iraq is becoming a new battlefield, nearly two years after US-led forces withdrew after their invasion in 2003. An initial period of calm after that withdrawal had raised hopes of normalcy.

Sunni-Shiite violence peaked in 2006-2007, claiming tens of thousands of lives.

Ipj/hc (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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